So piggy backing on everyone research, I am going to start this post with who I think will go in front of us.
Then, once I have that down – I will dive in on the different routes the Vikings can go. So let’s dive in!
1) Cardinals: QB Kyler Murray (Oklahoma): The fact that Steve Keim, the Cards GM, has a history with this team being successful is the only reason I see how he could from:
Signing new Head Coach (Steve Wilks)
Trading up to get Josh Rosen
Firing Steve Wilks
Signing new HC Kliff Kingsbury (who had a mediocre college career at best)…
Then…. walking into the Owners office and say that they want to go the QB route again and go with Kyler Murray… All in the span of a year!!??
I don’t know… Good for him I guess..? The one point that he has going for him is that this position is a make it or break it slot and its not every day that you get the #1 overall pick so because this is the general buzz, we’ll run with the experts and say Kyler Murray goes to the Cards and Steve Keim will still have a job after he submits the pick.***
** Back on track – I promise I won’t do that for every pick.
2) 49ers: EDGE Nick Bosa (OSU): This is pretty much a general consensus and no arguments here.
3) Jets: EDGE Josh Allen (Kentucky): Next Edge Rusher up.
4) Raiders: DT Quinnen Williams (Alabama): Rebuilding that D-Line and in this position, this is the best step 1.
5) Buccaneers: EDGE Montez Sweat (Miss. St.): After getting Vita Vea last year, even with an aging McCoy – I think they bring more power to that edge as opposed to finding another interior Defensive to take the reigns of McCoy.
6) Giants: EDGE Rashan Gary (Michigan): Next Edge Rusher in Line and the Giants have to get back to their calling card of bringing QB pressure.
7) Jaguars: OT Jawaan Taylor (Florida): First O-Line off the board, and the Jags have to add protection for their new asset Nick Foles if they want to replicate the success he had behind the Eagles O-Line.
8) Lions: TE T.J. Hockenson (Iowa): With former DC of the Pats now at the helm, I feel like this may be his next step in cloning the pieces he had in New England. And Stafford loves targeting big bodies in the pass game, so this pick from the experts makes the most sense to me.
9) Bills: OT Andre Dillard (Wash. St): Josh Allen showed some promise and he was certainly better than I thought he would be. Now they have to invest in protecting him.
10) Broncos: QB Drew Lock (Missouri): I wouldn’t wish this on any QB, but John Elway is John Elway so here is his next test bunny for him to somehow destroy. And this seems like a general consensus from the Mocks I’ve seen. Poor Boy.
11) Bengals: LB Devin White (LSU): Full disclosure, don’t follow this team. But they were bad and I guess Linebacker was a big hole….. so I will defer.
12) Packers: EDGE Brian Burns (FSU): next EDGE rusher off the board and at this stage of the draft, Burns fits best with the Packers 3-4 scheme.
13) Dolphins: QB Dwayne Haskins (OSU): They have everyone’s favorite backup in Ryan Fitzpatrick but to plan for the future, this is a great play at pick 13 (Daniel Jones would work here too).
14) Falcons: DT Ed Oliver (Houston): This is general consensus in the mocks I have seen so I am rolling with Oliver at 14.
15) Redskins: WR D.K. Metcalf (Miss.): A lot of Mocks have Daniel Jones in this slot but with the signing of Case… I personally just wouldn’t want that much stock in one position where you know at some point you are going to have a lot of your CAP HIT sitting on the bench or rehabbing. But in the same breath, it was pretty nice for the Vikings when we had Bradford, Bridgewater, and Keenum – so if the do go Jones at pick 15, I couldn’t knock it.
16) Panthers: G – Jonah Williams (Alabama): Have to protect Cam and so much of Panthers success relies on the run game – so this seems like the right play in the first round.
17) Giants: This is the weird one for me. If Daniel Jones is there, I could see them going Daniel Jones. But if they pick another QB, they have to protect him as well as Eli Manning. So it is for that reason that I am thinking they will actually go with Tackle – Dalton Risner (Kansas State) for this pick.
Now the Vikings….
Even if this deviates slightly (or drastically for that matter), there are A TON of defensive players on the board that Zimmer would love to have… which truth be told I would not mind. Because left on this board you have guys like Greedy Williams (CB out of LSU), The entire Clemson D-Line, Jerry Tillery Notre Dame (DT), and the list goes on.
BUT every year we are having the same conversation that we need to beef up our O-Line. And capitalizing on all the signings we have through 2021, we may be running out of time with this core?
With those two camps… I could see us going 4 different ways. And to save the typing, any and all of these scenarios involve trading Waynes to get an extra pick and free up cap space ($9M!) when we are inevitably unable to re-sign him, next year.
Best player available: which truthfully could be a Defensive Player. And if it is a Defensive player, I would not mind if it was CB – Greedy Williams. And the reason I say that is that would make it a whole lot easier to deal Trae Waynes during the draft. Holton Hill’s 1 game suspension, waiting for Mike Hughes to return from his injury last year, are two reasons why they might not want to start short handed in the 2019 season. But if they went Jerry Tillery (DT) out of Notre Dame, I think that would cross off a need, keep Zimmer happy, and allow us to focus on O-Line in the 2nd Round.
TE ROUTE: Grab Noah Fant, who would serve as a TE option as we will most likely start our transition without Kyle Rudolph. And the intriguing option with this route is that if Noah pans out at we let Kyle walk after this year, that frees up $7.6M to play with next offseason. And combine that with a trade for Trae Waynes during the draft – that is a whole lot more money to play with next year and make a run.
Take Best O-Line available: The reason I am not the biggest fan of this is I feel like we would be reaching on interior lineman. We could go Cody Ford, but the guys I am liking in this position of need is Garrett Bradbury C out of NC State. Grab him and I couldn’t be too mad about the first round. Because I think this works the best with what we have already at that position with Reiff and O’Neal as the 2 Tackles and Elfein who has interior line flexibility. And then we would just have 1 more guard spot to fill later in the draft.
TRADE DOWN: If we do go the O-Line route… I would absolutely love if we could trade down into the mid 20s and get an extra pick in an upcoming round. Some Mocks actually have Bradbury going to the Chiefs at 29! But if he is gone before the mid 20s which I think he could be, I would also love to have Chris Lindstrom (Guard) out of Boston College. And then let’s say we were able to get a extra 2nd rounder for Trae Waynes (or our trade down)… we could grab Center Erik McCoy out of Texas A&M or Elgton Jenkins (Guard) out of Miss. St.
A lot of options! But whatever we do go with, if we can get a buyer for Waynes (even if its a 4th) – do it. It will allow us to shore up the Interior O-Line, or get some help next to Linval Joseph.
One name that I love for a 4th round pick would be Michael Jordan (Guard) out of Ohio State. So if we keep waiting on that 2nd Guard position – he would be my ace in the hole from everything I have read about him.
Exciting Times. And can’t wait for next Thursday!